November 13. A well-known destination glacier in Chilean Patagonia is now closed to tourists due to the risk of “catastrophic” falls of ice and disintegration.
The Exploradores (Explorers) glacier is located in the Laguna San Rafael National Park, in the breathtakingly beautiful Aysen region of the country, which boasts mountains, rivers and rainforest, as well as glaciers. It attracts up to 20,000 visitors a year.
But since 31 October 2023, tourists have been banned from the Exploradores glacier, after an ice fall and subsequent study revealed “evident risks and uncertainty regarding the behaviour of the glacier.” An email from the forestry department, which manages Chile’s national parks, explained that the glacier is at an “inflection point” and warned: “Conditions are not safe for ecotourism activities on the Explorers Glacier.”
For the local economy and those tour companies affected, the decision to close the glacier is a shock and emotions are running high.
Source: Travel Tomorrow